The Halal: Chicken and Lamb are halal. Alcohol is served here but there is no pork on the menu currently.
The Place: This Indian street kitchen found on Portman Mews South, behind bustling Oxford street is a great pick-me-up after a day of feet-aching shopping or if you fancy grabbing a quick bite. Rohit Chugh (ex-Goldman Sach’s trader) is the brains behind the operation. The Street food part of the restaurant is a bright and colourful canteen-style space upstairs. Downstairs is the formal dining room which serves traditional curries – I’ve been told they’re nothing special and regardless, I have a penchant for street food! The Food: A delectable selection of street snacks (and with the assurance of not acquiring the infamous Delhi-belly!) For the veggies, a variety of spicy chaats – the bhel puri and papri chaat are particularly good.
The dhokla, a gujrati rice and chickpea cake, was well-presented but the dense consistency left me feeling disappointed.
The hakka chilli paneer, an indo-chinese favourite, was hot, hot, hot! If you can handle your spice then it’s definitely worth a try, though I’ve noticed the portion seems to be shrinking every time I visit.
For the carnivores, the Keralan chicken lollipops are finger-licking good. The ‘Buns’- punjabi mini burgers come with three fillings: aloo tikki (spiced potato patty), lamb chapli kebab or saucy chicken pieces and all have lots of raw onions – just as you would expect from the streetside cafes in Mumbai! It does not make for attractive eating and using fingers is a must- you have been warned!
Wash the lot down with a glass of hot masala chai- blended with cardamom, ginger, cinnamon and clove. The perfect end to a meal- especially since we had no space left for dessert!
The Price: £15-20 per person
The Verdict: Roti Chai A quick fix- cheap and cheerful, fast service, not fussy and overall yummy. Perfect for sharing with friends and family- not the correct ambience if you’re looking for a romantic meal.